October 24, 2021

JAXA: First images from samples collected by Hayabusa2 from the asteroid Ryugu

JAXA: First images from samples collected by Hayabusa2 from the asteroid Ryugu

After successfully retrieving the Hayabusa2 spacecraft capsule that carried samples from the surface of the asteroid Ryugu , the Japanese Space Agency ( JAXA ) is sharing more information about the contents.

Scientists say that Hayabusa2 was able to close gaseous samples in the capsule, and even claim that they are the first samples of gases that have come to Earth from the depths of space, as their chemical structure differs compared to what is observed on Earth. .

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The other two capsule chambers brought back a type of black powder and rocks weighing 1 to 2 grams, so JAXA was able to bring back to Earth a 20 times larger sample than originally estimated (100mg). Also keep in mind that the first Hayabusa had just collected 1mg from the asteroid Itokawa .

At this stage, analyzes are being performed using microscopes and infrared spectroscopes, with the first results expected in early 2021. At the end of next year, JAXA will share its samples with other Space Services, such as NASA.

The samples are expected to give us very important information about the birth of our Solar System, perhaps even the information that asteroids transported organic matter to Earth for life to appear.